HELP! Daughter Needs Friends at School!

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Cinderella's Momma, Sep 25, 2007.

  1. Cinderella's Momma

    Cinderella's Momma New Member

    I need suggestions if anyone has them. My difficult child informed me that she has no friends at school. At recess she plays by herself because no one will play with her. One boy, who tends to be a bully, allows her to play one game with him each day, but that's it. No one else will play with her. :crying:
    I am presuming that this has to do with her bossiness and anger issues, but it has never been an issue before this year. This year, however, only the 2nd graders and 3rd graders (her grade) share a lunch/recess and I know that she has friends that are in K and some that are older. She has always, usually, done better with kids younger than her or older than her.
    A couple of girls who used to be her girlfriends that were/are her babysitters kids, are now telling her that she is not their friend and one of them has been telling other people that my daughter hit her (which, unfortunately, she did), so that other kids won't play with her.
    She told me last night that she was stupid and that's why kids won't play with her. I tried to comfort her and I told her she's not stupid, of course, but I know she doesn't understand, and frankly, neither do I.
    I don't remember kids being this hurtful at this age. I mean even the bullys have friends, so why can't my difficult child? She is bossy and she does throw things and hit when she gets angry, and I know that is an issue, but I also know that she doesn't know how to control it yet. She does have one friend at school who likes her and likes to come over to our house, but it is my understanding that she usually plays with other friends who do not like my difficult child at school. I know my difficult child has a good heart, it's just that she has so many issues due to the ADHD and ODD and with- her dad being in jail.
    This being friendless is causing her anger to upgrade as well. Just in the last week she rammed our screen door and so now it is totally ruined and has to be replaced; she broke the door on our entertainment center and has done other numerous little things. She has friends that we see on occassion that don't go to her school, but she needs friends at school, obviously. I have emailed the teacher and the guidance counselor, but I don't know what else to do.
    I am so worried about my poor baby. She is such a social butterfly that this is really hurting her bad and I don't know how to fix it! :sad:
  2. Cinderella's Momma

    Cinderella's Momma New Member

    P.S. I changed my name from Cheyenne's Momma to Cinderella's Momma due to some suggestions I saw other people give about keeping it anonymous.
  3. SnowAngel

    SnowAngel New Member

    Have you asked the school if they have any activities or support groups? When we lived in MN the school had a program where all new kids had a teacher as a buddy. This gave them a safe person to talk with when they were sad or frustrated. They also did crafts once a month and lunch once a week.

    Maybe talking to the class about why some kids gets angry? Some times kids just don't understand and that is why they push difficult child's away. My son K has problems making friends and this year he felt comfortable to tell another boy about his brothers. That boy comes over and brings both his game stations, games and controls for everyone. He asks questions and is not so shocked when my youngest acts up.

    Some counseling services offer support groups for kids. Boys & Girls club even offers sliding scale for single parents, and many times they are at the kids school for the after school program.

    Maybe girl scouts, dance class or karate to make new friends and increase confidence.

    Sorry I can only offer what I have tried or heard things that have worked for others. I know others will be along to offer advice too.
  4. meowbunny

    meowbunny New Member

    Sadly, girls are that cruel at 8. Cliques are formed and change weekly. So, she may be friendless this week and totally in next week. However, if she's throwing things and hitting in school, she's always going to be on the outside. By second grade, it frightens kids. They've learned violence is unacceptable and don't know what to do when one of their peers is violent. By third grade, a violent child is going to be totally ostracized.

    I used to volunteer at a local school. For two years, I helped in a third grade class. In one, there was a little girl who truly marched to her own drummer. She did not play with the other kids at recess and, if they could avoid it, they did not have her in class groups. Fortunately, she understood she was different and was at least semi-content to hang with the teachers and staff at recesses and lunch. If she really wanted to play with the other kids, she just kind of pushed her way in and they kind of accepted her for that period of time.

    If her school has a social group, try to get her into it. It might help her learn better social interactions. You might talk to the teacher to see if there's some kind of buddy system.

    Some things that might at least get your daughter to feel she is playing with the other kids is things like tetherball. Anything where the kids have to stand in line and take turns playing at recess. While it won't quite make up for not being able to play the other games, it at least will get her being with the other children.

    I'm sorry this is happening. I do understand your pain since my daughter was one of those who didn't have friends. She was so desperate she would bring toys to school and give them to someone so they would play with her at recess. It broke my heart but the reality is there truly wasn't anything I could do to make the kids play with her at school even though we had many playdates at my home. I think this is one of the more heartbreaking things we see and go through being parents of a child with special needs. :sad:
  5. branbran

    branbran New Member

    I know how hearbreaking that is firsthand, my difficult child daughter went through the very same thing in school!! It was devastating for me as well as for her. She is 16 now and in an Residential Treatment Center (RTC), but up until she was placed into Special Education, she went through so much difficulty in school with her peers. She was placed into Special Education in the 6th grade. She used to tell me the same thing, "Mommy the kids don't play with me because I'm stupid, why don't I have a best friend?" Broke my heart. I even overheard parents talking about my little girl, saying things like, they don't want their children playing with my daughter. It was tough, very tough. Things got better when my difficult child went into Special Education, I was very reluctant to take her out of mainstream classes for fear she would be ridiculed, however it was just the opposite, she fit better, she felt more comfortable with the children that were more similar to her. Still to this day, she doesn't have a best friend. It is very hard for her to maintain friendships, it's very sad. Kids are cruel and don't really realize the consequences their actions have on others, especially girls. I don't really have advise as I still struggle with the same issues today, I wish I had the answer, if you figure it out please let me know. :smile:

    I hope things get better for your little girl. God bless.
  6. Wishing

    Wishing New Member

    What helped my child to stay in the game. Belonging to a church group with a strong youth program. As the years went by this became more and more important. Adults there gave good supervision and support. We also participated in athletics every season such as soccer,basketball,little league,hockey,golf,tennis. My difficult child loved to have a play dates so he chose from one of these groups. I and the psychiatrist addressed any issue like anger control. Mine was on zyprexa and ritalin and then later switched to abilify and concerta this helped with the bossiness and the irritability and aggressiveness.For us athletics tired him out and he had to learn to work together as a team.
    It helps to be part of some interest group. The kids become acquainted and have a starting point for friendship. I also found that who the coach was important. If you know of one who is exceptionally good with kids you can request that coach. Some adults help kids with anxiety more than others.
  7. nvts

    nvts Active Member

    Hi! This is such a brutal subject. 8 years old and faced with this! I feel so bad for both of you.

    First: tell her to try and pick something that she knows the other kids at school don't like. Yelling, hitting, pushing, bossiness, rudeness, etc. Let her pick ONE specific thing to change. She's 8 now, so she can keep her own checklist at school.

    Second: once she picks 1 thing, tell her to put a check mark on a piece of paper for everytime she felt like doing it, and stops herself. Have a "treasure & treat" chest ready for her to come home to. Start small: cook with you, stickers, stuff from the $1.00 store, etc. will help her.

    Third: keep praising her, let her know that you support her and that you're proud of what she's doing. DON'T LECTURE! Just remind her that she's doing this so she can meet friends.

    We have been through this and we're working on it with the boys. We explained that the kids reaction is a direct result of the choices that they've made and now it's up to them to fix.

    Good luck!
  8. Big Bad Kitty

    Big Bad Kitty lolcat

    Hey C's momma

    Having the EXACT same problems with my own daughter, I know how this hurts a mommy heart.

    What I discovered is that Tink does better in activities that are not "team" sports. She is so quirky, and can get weird for no reason. If an entire team is counting on her, it is not fair to the team.

    She did well in cheerleading, acting, and art. Not so good in football.

    In Tink's case, she does OK with friends at school, but when she gets home (where there are 10 kids living in our complex) she can't get along with ANY of them. Very painful to watch.

    (((((hugs)))) to you and Cinderella.
  9. Cinderella's Momma

    Cinderella's Momma New Member

    Thank you all for your support! :smile:

    I am taking her into the Child Guidance Center here and they are going to do a full psychiatric evaluation and then they start in on counseling. I am hoping that these new counselors will be more aggressive and able to help her out and help her understand what is going on inside her little head so that she can learn to control it better.

    From my understanding, she does not hit or throw things at school, but she does try to control everything (I blame my mother for that one! ;oP) when she plays, so that could be part of the problem.

    Being weird for no reason at all is ME!! :rofl:

    And she does it too. Our school doesn't offer after school activites or sports until they are much older. difficult child does love cheerleading, but I believe they have to be in 6th grade or higher before you can do that. I looked into a cheerleading program nearby, but I couldn't afford it at all, it was very expensive!

    She was in dance and she liked it, but ballet is too slow for her, not to mention that it kept getting more expensive as it went along. I would like to put her in Martial Arts, I've heard that it is very good for kids with- ADHD, but, again, it's a money thing.

    Because of her reading issues, it's not like she can get a book and sit in the corner and read like I used to do and so she has no out there, but I'm hoping that we can get something worked out.

    One of my friends here also suggested the buddy system, so that may be something I can discuss with her teacher. It just breaks my heart so bad. I have never had to worry about her in the friends area before and always thought that that would be the one issue I wouldn't have to deal with, but the last few months have made all that change and it's awful. I cried myself to sleep last night and feel as if a bigger weight has been added to my shoulders.

    I hope and pray that this situation changes for the better for both our sakes. Thanks, again. :flower:
  10. SnowAngel

    SnowAngel New Member

    If your insurance is through your state(medicaid, Ahcccs, kids care,etc..) the counseling agencies they are assigned to usually have funds for supportive services. These funds can be used for karate class, after school programs and even tutoring if it pertains to the childs progress of becomming confident and building social skills.

    My boys are on state ins and their counselor was going to help get them into some activity program and they were paying for it. I was also informed by a CPS worker that the schools have funding for their special needs kids. Not sure if that is just in AZ.

    Ask the guidance center if they have any resources for activities. Even ask if they know of any with sliding fee scales. When my 14yr daughter was 6 I signed her up for T-ball and they had scholarships for those who couldn't afford daughter received one. Some summer camps also offer scholarships. My monkey went to asthma camp through the american lung association and all I paid was the processing fee of $50.00.

    Hang in there.I know it is hard watching your child in pain, but you are on the right path. Keep asking the questions. Good luck & keep us posted.
  11. Cinderella's Momma

    Cinderella's Momma New Member

    No, my daughter's insurance is not State funded. They claimed I made to much money which is a laugh riot. I have tried applying for other kinds of funding to help out, but the majority of the places tell me that I make too much money for a 2 person home. What a !@#$$^&* (excuse my french!)! ;oP

    I will ask the Center once I get there and see what they say, thanks for that!
  12. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I think the best thing you can do is to get her very involved in something she really likes--church, dance classes, swimming, anything--and see if she makes friends there. Make sure the kids don't go to her school, so she can start fresh. When I was a kid I was the geek and had no friends, but my mom put me in drama and singing where I could shine. It didn't make school better (except that, even though I didn't have friends, I was known for being talented), but it gave me a focus and helped my self-esteem. Every Saturday, instead of being Nerd Girl I had lots of friends. I'd also look into social skills groups and see if there is any older child student mentoring at your school. Some older kids LOVE to mentor younger kids, and many are popular kids who can help your daughter fit more into a groove. Good luck. Big hugs to your little one.
  13. SnowAngel

    SnowAngel New Member

    I am sorry about the insurance. I only have it know because I was told by a psychiatrist I can't work until peanut is more under control.I was told that I made to much when I was working and trying to support 6 kids without child support. Funny thing is that money was so tight if my kids needed anything I had to pull from the gas fund and hope I could car pool to work with somebody.

    It angers me when people try so hard to work and support their family, but can't get a bit of help. I truly hope the center has some resources for you. Keep us posted.
  14. nvts

    nvts Active Member

    Hi! One of the things that I found out was that many of the free child advocacy orgs. have a lot of supports and groups that are not based on income. They are free for all that join. Teen Clubs, trips (zoo, movies, bowling, etc) that are age appropriate.

    Sometimes you have to dig. Check with Mental Health Agencies, various religious organizations (the Jewish Board of Children and Family Services had an organization here called "Community Resources" that is a federally funded program that provides advocates, respite services, group activities during school breaks, etc.). Whenever it is federally funded, you can qualify.

    Sorry I can't be more specific in your state. I just know that I got sick and tired of the local naysayers that there wasn't anything out there for my boys! We even found an aspergers Boy Scout Troop for them.

    You can also check with various scouting orgs., 4H clubs, etc.

    Good luck!